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We want to raise capons

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by tlink34, Sep 13, 2010.

  1. tlink34

    tlink34 New Egg

    Aug 16, 2010
    Is there a place we can buy them at this late date?

    I would like 12 or so to butcher in about 12 weeks.
  2. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    [​IMG] Where do you live? I think you'd have to buy them locally since capons are typically made into capons when they are at least several weeks old. I don't know how early anyone can turn a cockerel chick into a capon, I haven't tried on anyone younger than 9 weeks. I'm letting mine grow out for a while, longer than 12 weeks, until they get really big & beefy.

    Maybe you could learn to do the procedure yourself, there's been a lot of discussion & instruction about it on this forum already
  3. schmism

    schmism Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 16, 2007
    Peoria IL
    at what point do they get to old? i mean the reason to capon-ize them is so the meet isnt affect by the male hormones so..... later would not seem to be better....
  4. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Well, the younger the chick the greater the chance of incorrectly sexing it and prying open a pullet to look for testicles that are not there. I guess you could operate on very young chicks that can be feather- or color-sexed, like White Leghorns and Sex-linked breeds, but their testicles would be so tiny they would be more difficult to locate & remove. I don't know just how young a person could successfully caponize a chick. The ones I've done were between 9-12 weeks. Their testicles were the size of dry navy beans.

    I think the purpose of caponizing is to make them grow meatier, just like other castrated meat animals like pigs, cattle, sheep & goats. I really don't think that the male hormones affect the taste or texture of the meat, but instead just regulate & limit the animal's growth. When their bodies are de-programmed for reproduction, they redirect their energy into growth.

    I also don't know how old is too old for caponizing to have an affect. I guess like with other animals, the later you neuter them the more time they've had for their hormones to have an affect on their growth & behavior. I wouldn't want to try it on a fully-grown rooster, or even one much past 15 weeks. I'd try to operate on them between 7-14 weeks, as soon as I was fully certain of their sex, not after they started to act cocky.

    I've processed & eaten intact roosters, at 20-24 weeks their testicles are the size of large peach pits. Their meat has been tasty & tender, especially when cooked slowly with moist heat, but there just isn't as much of it. The largest I've had was barely 5 pounds, most average around 4. I would like these standard and mixed-breed cockerels to grow bigger by butchering time.
  5. scubaforlife

    scubaforlife Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 13, 2009
    Why would you caponize and then slaughter at 12 weeks? Its like slaughtering a CX at 32 days. Not going to get much out of it.

    Normally you'd let them run around for 24+ weeks and get HUGE
  6. mstricer

    mstricer Overrun With Chickens

    Feb 12, 2009
    Your supposed to do this between 2 and 4 weeks of age. The younger the better. they have less adverse affects from it and survival rate is higher. It takes alot to learn and I heard you kill alot before you get better.
  7. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Two to four weeks of age? Wow, I've never tried operating on ones that young & small, have you? I have a hard enough time finding the little testicles on older chicks, I don't know if I could find what I was looking for in younger, smaller ones. But it's really not that difficult a procedure to learn, especially with all the great information, help & support on this forum. And personally, I only lost one, the first one I tried. Even he wasn't a total loss, I turned him over and removed the testicle on his other side and prefected my technique. All of the others have survived the procedure with little after-affects or complications. Of course they won't speak to me ever again and only refer to me as THAT WOMAN.

    I agree, it's best to let them grow out nice & meaty before processing, at 12 weeks of age they'd probably still be too small. Maybe the OP wants half-grown capons to let grow out another 12 weeks before they bring them to the table or freezer.

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